Why the Buccaneers must select Dalvin Cook in the draft if at all possible.
You are all Buccaneers fans. Everybody knows that the running back situation is, well, complicated. The Doug Martin situation is fluid, to say the least. We just don’t know how long the Bucs are going to hold onto him. It could be that they are waiting to see how this pick turns out. We shall see.
The rumors are starting to get hotter about the Bucs and Dalvin Cook. We have reported that there is interest from both sides on this. Three out of four of the mocks on the NFL.com draft page have Cook going to the Bucs. People are starting to believe what we already have believed for a long time.
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Today I am going to take it one step further. Dalvin Cook is not only a good play for the Bucs here at 19, he’s a must. The Bucs must choose Cook here or they will regret when they let the next Warrick Dunn play for an opponent.
That’s how good this young man can be.
Let’s remind ourselves of his college stats:
Cook is a guy that can get it done as an every-down back. He can catch the football and run it. The impressive trend to notice is the upward trend with regards to his receptions. Adding to them every year shows a player that considers receiving an important part of his game. Not every back does. When you find one, that’s special.
Do you remember any long plays out of the Bucs running backs last year? There must have not been too many because I am struggling to even remember one. Dalvin Cook is a big play waiting to happen. He averaged 6.5 yards per carry over his entire career and scored 38 times over the last two seasons. Those are serious numbers at any level, and Cook was on a high-level college team.
Take a look at him against Michigan last year:
There is some serious speed on this man. When Cooks gets going he is in second gear before anyone has a chance to react. The fact that he can catch the football is an added bonus.
Here are just some of his attributes from his draft profile:
"Uses choppy feet and compact stride length downhill. Keeps feet under him and is able to make lateral cuts at a moment’s notice. Flourished in zone, gap and power schemes at FSU. At his best running wide while setting up lead blockers. Slows flowing safeties and linebackers with hesitation steps and glances back inside. Has run-away gear around the corner he keeps tucked away for special occasions. Darting style allows him to escape defenders who show gap commitment too soon. Plus vision. Quick to flow from first to second read on outside zone plays."
This is the type of explosive player the Bucs simply haven’t had. Putting a player of this caliber on the field every Sunday will strike fear in the hearts of defensive coordinators around the NFL.
One could argue that he is a bit small to be an every-down back. After all, he did measure in at 5’10”, 210 pounds at the Combine a couple of months ago. Keep in mind, however, the Bucs did have a guy that was an inch smaller at 5’9″, weighed in at 187 pounds, and put up numbers at Florida State like these:
In case you forgot, that player was Warrick Dunn. He made quite the career for himself in Tampa Bay, agreed?
Jason Licht, get it done. The Bucs need Dalvin Cook, and they must have him.